We Speak Perfume
We speak perfume in Paris with one of our perfume alchemist, Giulia Salutari.
What's your earliest olfactory memory?
My earliest scent memories are of the garden of my grandparents’ house when I was a child. I remember the enveloping scent of jasmine, and fresh, fruity, honey-like rose. The perfume I recall best is the Marvel of Peru flowers. They open after sunset and have a heady and milky scent. That smell told me it was time for dinner!
How you decided to become a perfumer?
I don’t know precisely how it started: I’ve always had a special passion for smells in general. I’ve always loved to smell everything, especially people. I like to tell myself that it’s thanks to my grandmother that I have this special relationship with smells; my mum told me that when I was about a month old, my grandmother, who is anosmic, wanted to test my sense of smell so she put her perfume under my nose. Apparently a huge smile appeared on my face!
Tell us about your favourite scents.
My favourite scent is without a doubt the perfume of the ylang ylang flower. I discovered it during my journey to Madagascar and I will never forget its rich and enveloping smell. Ylang has a solar and carnal scent, a bit animal and spicy. It can remind you of the orange blossom flower with its milky note. Whenever I smell it, I feel so good; it’s really invigorating, powerful and sensual.
Do you always notice perfume on others?
Yes, I think that it’s natural considering my job! I like to test my ability to recognise perfumes. But what I love most is smelling people’s skin scent. It’s something that I’ve always done with my family and friends: I think that it’s something that make relationships really personal and intimate.
What should people know about choosing a perfume?
Choosing a perfume is something that requires reflection and time. A fragrance needs to be tested on the skin to see how it evolves during the day and how it reacts. So it’s always best to ask for a sample, try it for a couple of days and then make the final decision.
What’s your favourite base and accord?
My favourite base is Exotic Floral because it’s creamy, solar, carnal, reassuring and reminds me of exotic locations. I love the smell of gardenia and tuberose, made rounder by the sandalwood and softer by the coconut. My favourite accord is Marine Breeze because it reminds me of the sea and of all the summer holidays that I spent in Sicily. I love its salt-watery note, that adds a particular freshness to all our bases.
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